Emmys showdown: ‘Fargo’ stars Billy Bob Thornton vs. Martin Freeman

FX’s “Fargo” is the new frontrunner for Best Miniseries after impressive reviews and high ratings for its first episodes, but does that also mean Emmys for its cast?

FX’s ‘Fargo’ is now the Emmy frontrunner for Best Miniseries

Billy Bob Thornton is currently the strongest bet for an acting nomination, ranking fourth in our combined odds for Best Movie/Mini Actor. However, most of our editors – four out of seven – are betting on him to win.

Co-star Martin Freeman, who’s already a top contender in the supporting race for “Sherlock,” is on the bubble for a Movie/Mini Actor nod, in seventh place with 33/1 odds. But like the miniseries itself, Thornton and Freeman have risen steadily in our odds in recent weeks.

The supporting categories are less certain. Allison Tolman is making inroads in the Movie/Mini Supporting Actress race, currently in seventh with 50/1 odds. Tolman is a relatively unknown actress with few previous credits, but she plays a borderline lead role in a high-profile project, so she has to be taken seriously as a contender, especially when you consider that a similar role won Frances McDormand an Oscar for the 1996 film version.

Several actors from “Fargo” are entered for Movie/Mini Supporting Actor. Of those, Keith Carradine ranks highest in our odds (12th place) for playing Tolman’s father, but that could change; over the first four episodes, Colin Hanks (13th in our odds) and Oliver Platt (16th) are featured even more prominently.

‘FARGO’ EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEWS: Billy Bob Thornton, Martin Freeman, and Keith Carradine

What do our editors think of the actors’ chances?

Chris Beachum: Billy Bob Thornton is slyly evil, but we knew he would be. The real surprise to me is Martin Freeman. His dweeb of a character does things (good and bad) that are far outside of his typical roles. Even as much as I love Freeman, the best performance just might be from Alison Tolman as the deputy who everybody underestimates. Having never seen her before, she is blowing me away episode after episode.

Rob Licuria: The movie/mini acting races are as hot as ever this year, and I expect Billy Bob Thornton to be right up there in contention for the win (especially because those “True Detectives” are in the Drama Actor race). But I just want to put this out there – please, academy, nominate Martin Freeman. He was so, so, so good. He deserves the win and I think it is not outside the realm of possibility that he could do it too.

Marcus Dixon: I have a feeling this year’s Movie/Mini Lead Actor race will come down to Thornton vs. Freeman, and I really don’t know who to root for. Thornton is giving one of the creepiest performances ever to grace the TV screen, but Freeman’s emotionally unbalanced antihero is just as riveting. It’ll be a showdown for the ages.

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